I'm BaldingBy Kechi Mbah
My reflection swallows round my eyes like twisted hair beads and pink oil
while the mirror leaks a frightening truth
that I go mad to.
I hold the wishing in my fingers
drenched in castor, tea tree, and peppermint
my scalp only blooms red
Where I’m FromBy Emme Mackenzie
I am from
the expressions of my people
flattened nose and slits for eyes
leathery skin and cricks in my back
each feature of mine
a reflection of my family heritage
Kansas CityBy Taj’Zhere Dillard
This here is real.
There are no stories
about happy homes and whole hearts
where we come from.
No fancy cars.
We got no big houses but big dreams.
This is crack fiends at midnight,
babies crying, sleeping on wooden floors.
You Know What HurtsBy Zander Glynn
When racial slurs are used against you
When people leave you out because of your skin color
When people look at you because of your skin
When you know you’re different
When someone spits at you because of your skin
When your own family won’t talk to you
antithesis of coconut oilBy Alice Kogo
my hair bleeds purple when i sleep
dark, violet, translucent in the way that sausage fat boiling on the pan is
before it touches a towel
in the way that a ghost’s imprint is before fingerprints are left on the kitchen counter
in the way that black bodies are